Social Capital Generators? A case study for the Industry

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Transcript Social Capital Generators? A case study for the Industry

Role of Industry
Associations in the
Vancouver New Media
Cluster
May 6, 2005
Paper written by by Michelle Petrusevich, MA,
School of Communication, SFU
Senior Supervisor: Dr. Richard Smith
Supervisors: Prof. Adam Holbrook and Dr.
Andrew Feenberg
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology
Agenda
1. Introduction and Definitions
2. Methodology and Industry
Description
3. Findings
4. Conclusions
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology
Definitions
Industry Associations - are assumed to
be non-profit organizations whose
activities are designed to support and
promote their industry.
Cluster - Geographic concentrations of
interconnected companies and institutions
in a particular field.
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology
Definitions
New Media - the use of new and
emerging interactive digital media for the
purposes of entertaining, educating and
informing.
Social Capital – the value of the
relationships that individual or an entity
derives from a network or a combination
of values, networks and norms that enable
a group of people to work together
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology
Research Question
What role industry
associations play in the
formation and maintenance
of a cluster?
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
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Site of Research – the Vancouver
New Media Industry
Located in the Lower Mainland
Latest studies (according to VPL and New Media
BC) that there are over 550 companies in the
Greater Vancouver Area and over 700 in the
province of BC, provides employment to over
14,000 people.
Four sub-clusters – e-learning, games, webservices and animation.
Young cluster – average company is about 6
years old and has 6 people.
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology
Methodology
ISRN data - over 70 ISRN interviews
Summer 2003 NMBC survey
Member surveys– over 50 new media
companies
Follow up interviews (modified Delphi
technique) with experts – 15 people
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Findings
The research revealed a number of ways that shows
how industry associations support the new media
industry which makes them a key ingredient for cluster
presence.
Activities organized by associations provide industry members with
opportunities to build trust and relationships with each other and
promote collaboration.
Associations help to hold new media industry and its community
together.
Ten Characteristics were revealed through field research
- niche and focus; voice of the industry; mentoring;
volunteering; learning ground; collaboration or coopetition ; gender differences; champions; ambassadors
and enlightened self-interest.
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology
Findings - Ten Characteristics
Niche and Focus (see figure on next slide) – subgroups: umbrella organizations for the whole industry
vs. associations that cater to a specific audience of a
particular sub-sector. They cut across the industry
and bring together companies and individuals from all
sub-clusters.
Voice of the Industry - due to nature of associations,
they provide a neutral place for people to discuss
common issues and communicate it to government
who likes to hear one voice
Role of Mentoring – associations’ staff members are
mentored by prominent members of the new media
community and associations, in turn, provide
mentoring services to their members
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology
Niche and Focus
Association/
Sub-sector
eLearning
Gaming
Web
Services
Animation
New Media BC
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SIGGRAPH
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IGDA
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BCTIA
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Wired Women S-ty
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HTCE
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TELUS New Ventures
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AceTech
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VEF
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TechVibes Media
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BC Film
eLearning BC
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T-Net British Columbia[1]
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Pacific Technology Network (PTN)
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DigitalEve Vancouver Chapter
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SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
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Findings - Ten Characteristics
Role of Champions – they inspire and support
the industry
Role of Ambassadors – they build networks
outside of new media community
Enlightened Self-interest – from the employer’s
point of view (looking for talent) and vice versa
Role of Volunteers – volunteers and
associations have mutually beneficial
relationships. There are two types – apprentices
and experienced seniors who lend their brain
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology
Findings - Ten Characteristics
Collaboration or Co-opetitions – while there is
a high degree of collaboration among
associations, sometimes they compete for
resources and members which creates politics
among organizations
Learning Ground – when associations’ staff
leave, they further knowledge transfer within
the industry.
Gender Difference – with some exceptions,
most associations’ staff are women – are they
better social capital builders than men or are
there other factors at play?
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Interviews Highlights
“We are the safety net for the industry to
make sure their [members’] needs are
driven forward and they are met in some
way. It can something as simple as
someone coming to the event and saying
– I am looking for XYZ, and I say I know
exactly who you should talk to, to that
person over there…”
Comment from an Interviewee, November 2004
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
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Challenges and Tensions
There are challenges that cause tensions
and may harm social capital in new media
industry, like
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Politics – internal and external
Lack of human and financial resources
Different needs of members – smaller
vs. bigger companies
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology
Conclusions
While associations encounter hurdles their
overall influence on formation and
maintenance of a cluster is positive
because:
10 characteristics make positive
contributions to generation of social capital
in the new media industry,
Industry associations provide a “safety
net” for the industry
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology
Conclusions
The presence of associations defines the
presence of the industrial cluster,
They facilitate internal and external
communication for the cluster –
“Every company is like an island
and associations are putting the
bridge between them and provide
communication.”
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology
The End
Thank you!
SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology